Billingshurst's promotion hopes take another hit with third straight loss

Ed Verrall top-scored for Billingshurst with 69 in their two-wicket defeat at home to Bognor Regis.
Picture by Peter Cripps.
Ed Verrall top-scored for Billingshurst with 69 in their two-wicket defeat at home to Bognor Regis. Picture by Peter Cripps.

Billingshurst’s promotion hopes took another hit as they suffered their third consecutive defeat in Division 2.

A two-wicket reverse at home to Bognor Regis has left the Jubilee Fields side with work to do if they are to return to the Premier Division at the first time of asking.


Tom Haynes’ side’s early-season dominance is over as they slipped down to fifth in the table and 12 points off the top three.


The captain said: “Some results went our way on the weekend, so we are still well in the mix for promotion.


“It’s a strange league, results can go either way. We just have to make sure we start winning.”


The home side’s openers Scott Stratton (16) and Haynes (25) put on an opening stand of 29 after then won the toss and batted.


Stuart Barber came and went for a duck, before some Haynes and topscorer Ed Verall (69) helped them to 66-3 before Joe Ashmore (4-52) claimed the scalp of the skipper.


Overseas Verrall and Andy Barr (29) then shared a 97-run stand for the fourth wicket, before both were dismissed in quick succession.


After that the remaining six batsmen added 17 runs between them as Hurst closed on 178-9 in 53 overs.


In reply, the capture of two early wickets from Alex Lowther gave Hurst hope before a 62-run stand from Mikey Harris (30) and Luke Seward (37) took them to 73-3.


Again, quick wickets fell as Ben Williams (3-53) and Verrall (3-38) kept things in the balance with Bognor at 79-6. But an unbeaten 51 from Jerome Jones and 40 from Josh Seward helped the away side to victory with 179-8 in the 45th over.


Hurst host an Eastbourne side on Saturday who sit a place and six points behind them.
Haynes added: “They bowled and fielded very well up front, making it extremely difficult to get away to a quick start. Although we stayed patient and had a good foundation to build on.
“We were 158-3 moving into the last eight overs, however, we ended up 20 to 30 short of where we wanted to be. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough to win the game.”